Lewis Hamilton Responds After Being Racially Abused By Former F1 Driver
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The 69-year-old Brazilian -–who won the world title in 1981, 1983 and 1987 – used the slur when referring to Hamilton in a newly surfaced interview conducted following the 2021 British Grand Prix.
Piquet, whose daughter Kelly is in a relationship with Red Bull's Max Verstappen, twice used the racist slur to refer to Hamilton in a video, which was released on Monday, 27 June.
Hamilton responded by retweeting a tweet, which read: "What if Lewis Hamilton just tweeted 'Who the f**k is Nelson Piquet?' then closed Twitter," along with the caption: "Imagine."
The 37-year-old then posted in Portuguese "Vamos focar em mudar a mentalidade," which translates as "Let's focus on changing the mindset."
In a subsequent tweet, he elaborated: "It's more than language. These archaic mindsets need to change and have no place in our sport.
"I've been surrounded by these attitudes and targeted my whole life. There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action."
It’s more than language. These archaic mindsets need to change and have no place in our sport. I’ve been surrounded by these attitudes and targeted my whole life. There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action.— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) June 28, 2022
Formula One issued a statement immediately supporting seven-time champion Hamilton.
"Discriminatory or racist language is unacceptable in any form and has no part in society. Lewis is an incredible ambassador for our sport and deserves respect," it read.
"His tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1."
Mercedes, who Hamilton races for, highlighted the matter as a reason to 'strive for a brighter future'.
"We condemn in the strongest terms any use of racist or discriminatory language of any kind," their statement read.
"Lewis has spearheaded our sport's efforts to combat racism, and he is a true champion of diversity on and off track.
"Together, we share a vision for a diverse and inclusive motorsport, and this incident underlines the fundamental importance of continuing to strive for a brighter future."
The FIA strongly condemns any racist or discriminatory language and behaviour, which have no place in sport or wider society. We express our solidarity with @LewisHamilton and fully support his commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in motor sport.— FIA (@fia) June 28, 2022
It comes ahead of this season's British Grand Prix, which takes place at Silverstone this weekend.
Verstappen currently leads the Championship by 46 points ahead of closest rival Sergio Perez, with Hamilton currently sixth in the standings.